Frequently Asked Questions
How did the special event get started?
N2F, the first station in the event, went QRV in 2013. The original idea of doing a special event for Fire Prevention Week was the brainchild of the Presidents of the Siemens Fire Safety USA Amateur Radio Club, KF2IRE. (Every member of the club is a President according to the club charter.)
N2F was only solo for one year. During our first activation, we put out a call for other hams who wanted to run special event stations, with an eye on becoming a multi-station event like the 13 Colonies. We contacted Ken Villon, KU2US, the guiding light of 13 Colonies on several occasions, to see how the "old master" had done it. Ken showed us how.
In 2014, we added N3F and N4F, organized by Bill Leggat, KB3WLE, and Scott Parker, K7LU, respectively. We also got several volunteers who helped us run N2F, notably Joseph Casieri, KA1JBE. Joe did yeoman's duty in giving N2F additional airtime.
2015 was the first year we offered a certificate. Joe, KA1JBE, organized N1F that year, and Roman Brandau, KD8XL, ran N8F, bringing our station count to five. Response to the certifcate offer was overwhelming, and boosted the popularity of the FPW event an order of magnitude. We continued to look for additional coverage.
In 2016, the event has been further broadened by Ken Cechura, KC9UMR, Hal Pagel, N5JLL, Jeff Widen, K6QCB, and Lee Barrett, K7NM, running N0F, N5F, N6F, and N7F. We also created the hamfire.com website to promote better organization, and received the help of Lee K7NM in getting QSL cards printed and Larry Skilton, K1IED, acting as QSL manager.
In 2017, we added Anthony Bustos, N9ARB, as the owner of N9F, completing our coverage of the ten US call areas. Also, due to a quirk in Canadian special event licensing, we had to change the call of VE3FIRE to VA3FIRE.
We look to working a whole lot of people, and raising awareness for fire safety in the ham community. It's always a lot of work, and we always have a great time doung it. We hope you do too!
How do I get a QSL?
See the instructions on the QSL page. If you're requesting from inside the USA, please send a self-addressed stamped envelope, rather than greenstamps.
Did you get my QSL request?
We sure hope so! But if it's been more than eight weeks since you mailed in your QSL request and you haven't received a QSL card, please
How do I get the certificate?
You need to work at least ten of the twelve Fire Prevention Week stations. These nine stations can be any combination of the ten: N0F, N1F, N2F, N3F, N4F, N5F, N6F, N7F, N8F, N9F, and the wildcard stations KF2IRE and VA3FIRE. When you are ready, fill out the certificate request form at this link.
I didn't work ten stations. Can I still get the certificate?
We value your participation in the Special Event. To give you the best chance to earn a certificate, our volunteers are putting in many hours of chair time running twelve Special Event stations. We want to give you the best chance we can.
That said, we think that the certificate should be a reward for meeting a worthy and fun challenge, rather than just a participation prize. Therefore, working at least ten of the twelve stations is an absolute requirement to earn the certificate. And, even if you don't get the certificate, we still value your interest in fire safety!
Is this a contest?
Nope. No scores, no leaderboard, no winners or losers. Just a special event that we hope will be fun and promote fire safety among hams. If you've enjoyed the event, you're a winner!
Can I get the fire prevention hints?
You sure can! They're on this site, right here.
I never heard one of the stations. What's wrong?
Please be patient and keep checking the spots. All our operators are trying their best to log as many QSOs as they possibly can.
Can I arrange a sked, or get the operating schedule for one of the stations?
That's at the discretion of the station owner. Please go to this page to contact the owner of the station you want to work.
I'd like to participate next year. How can I?
We have you covered, and we'd love to have you! Basically, you'll need a station that can communicate nationwide and a good chunk of time to operate. Please see this page to see what it takes.